In Which I Explain Fiscal Economics to Paul Krugman

Chris Kleponis/CNP via ZUMA

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

Paul Krugman has a couple of questions for his fellow economists:

As usual, Krugman doesn’t understand. Right-wing economists were calling for hard money in 2010 because the president was an obviously inexperienced Democrat likely to run the economy off the rails with his Democratic big-spending ways and tolerance for huge deficits. That was a totally reasonable position regardless of how deep our recession was.

Today, by contrast, the economy is in the hands of a Republican with 40 years of business experience who has shown himself to be a master of financial markets. And sure enough, he’s opposed to more spending except for defense and the wall and welfare for farmers affected by his trade war with China. Also, he cut taxes on corporations, which shows a real understanding of the fundamentals of the econonmy, and he tweets frequently about the dangerous deficits caused by the tax cut. This ability to keep multiple conflicting thoughts in his brain at once is the mark of a man with a Wharton degree and a sophisticated understanding of economics who can be trusted not do the right thing and should be given plenty of rope to do it.

Everything good now? Do we all understand why Obama needed to be reined in as a dangerously profligate Democrat while Trump can be given plenty of leeway because he’s a tightfisted Republican who won’t abuse his authority? Excellent.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate